Media intrusion into people's lives - Problems and solutions essay
¬¬While our newspapers are packed with pictures of celebrities taken by paparazzi, an article in Time magazine raises the question of whether journalists are to be trusted to strike a balance between the public interest in the free flow of information and the privacy of individuals. As the media get more flexible and intrusive in their attempt to get across as much information as possible, there is a noticeable decline in the quality of information and newspapers for instance, which are stuffed with gossip pages and photos of celebrities rather than important or useful news, tend to violate the basic rights of privacy.
The main problem with intrusive journalists is that they reveal stories about individuals supposedly for the sake of the public, while in the same time lead to the destruction of families or marriages. Steps should be taken in order to combat the destructive side of journalism, which often times goes unpunished. Governments should focus their attention on eradicating cases where an individual suffers persecution or humiliation due to careless media attention. Laws should be imposed to ban newspapers that do not meet strict privacy regulations. Thus every decent newspaper would expose stories about actors, politicians and so on only if it were strictly a matter of public interest.
Secondly, the flaw in giving the media the final word in the case of whether to publish a story or not, is that sometimes they even decide on the very life of an individual. Hundreds upon hundreds of suicide case have been reported due to unsupported and careless media attention. The only possible way to eradicate this problem would be to impose criminal responsibility on journalists who frivolously publish stories which are either not true or contain sensitive information. And again, only severe restrictions will ensure a safer and more conscious society.
One final and rather straightforward suggestion is for the society to change. The fact that the general public is immature and always eager to exchange the latest gossips about celebrities, is the core of the problem. If it were to change, the media would have to adjust to the demand of the society, which in turn would lead journalists to reveal only stories that matter to the public and at the same time do not expose the individual to any form of danger.
All in all, although it would not be easy to eradicate the problems caused by the intrusion of the media into people’s lives, yet there are certainly several solutions to reduce the scale of the problem. However, if the society chooses not to change their style of life, then the situation is likely to stay the same or even worsen.